Rainy Days are Good for Running…
I was just two steps into my weekly long run, before I immediately felt like a head of lettuce in the produce isle. A cool, gentle mist fell on my face, and I suddenly noticed how quiet everything was. The rain seemed to be keeping everyone safe and dry, indooors. No dogs were barking at my footsteps, no kids were out riding the lawn mowers with their parents, no cars were passing me by. I didn’t hear anything but my gentle footsteps on the sandy road and I had only my thoughts for company. I began to appreciate the musty autumn smells of wet leaves on the grass, indulging in the sweet smells of rain mixed with maple trees. It was pure bliss.
Miles covered: 7.0.
Rainy Days are Good for Trying Something New…
I have a small confession to make. Or maybe it’s a huge confession, depending on how seriously you take this issue. Okay, you ready? Here goes…before today I’ve never had a medjool date. There, I said it.
It’s true. I’ve been receiving so many comments from people saying that my dates with peanut butter look amazing, and a few people were commenting on how much they loved medjool dates, wondering if mine were medjools too. I thought that was just a fancy name for dates, not realizing that they were actually a special type of date. One website I came across called them the, I quote, “diamond of dates” and another labeled them the “king of dates.” I was reading all this while eating from a bag of dole dates. “Oh whatever,” I thought to myself. “A date is a date…right?”
It wasn’t until I just recently read an article on the actual cultivation of dates that I started to become a little more interested in the medjool. Did you know that they are mostly picked by hand rather then in large clusters? That’s because they’re so juicy and soft, and simply grabbing them would squash them into a hunk of goo. Which also explains why they’re so expensive!! I found myself glancing at the prices at whole foods…$8.99 a pound was the cheapest I could find. But I didn’t care. They were hand picked. They were the king of dates. I grabbed the smallest package I could find—aka, cheapest—and walked my way to the check out line with my prized possession.
First bite = one word: date euphoria. Okay, that was two words.
You have yet to try dates until you’ve tried the medjool, I kid you not. I suddenly felt silly for topping my dates with peanut butter after trying them. No need. No need at all. They’re perfect and best left untampered with, I think. If you’ve yet to introduce your tastebuds to medjool dates, you’re in for a real treat. 😀
Rainy Days are Good For Cooking
I make this minestrone soup recipe from the New York Times at least once a year. It’s one of my favorite late summer soups, because it takes care of all those vegetables that you’re not really sure how you should use. One of my favorite things about it, aside from the array of veggies in one bowl, is that it doesn’t require any vegetable stock or broth. The stewing of the vegetables in water lends the most wonderful, savory flavors.
I didn’t have everything that the recipe required, but I simply substituted with what I did have. Garbanzo beans for the white beans. Asiago cheese for the parmesan. Barley for the macaroni. The beauty of this dish is the versatality of it. Don’t be afraid to mix things up, and let your garden or farmers market be your main inspiration. 😀
I should also note that I always double this recipe. I figure if I spend the time peeling and dicing a turnip, may as well double it so I can freeze it for an easy dinner in the coming weeks.
Mom and Dad were huge fans of the minestrone, which makes me happy. As much I enjoyed it, I can’t imagine eating the entire batch myself. 😉
Rainy Days are Good for Vegging
I’m catching up on blogs, reading all of your wonderful smilie ideas, adding them to my own list, and planning for the upcoming week too. Pj’s…check. Good movie…check. Snack…check. I’m good to go.
Hope you’re all enjoying your weekend! 😀